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Peripheral Vision - Wednesday's NBA Action

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There are only a small handful of games that even remotely impact the Cavaliers today.  Our lead in the pertinent races are safe tonight, as no team within several fathoms of us will be playing.  But there's still something to focus on, especially regarding our initial opposition in the NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs.

Memphis at Boston, 730pm EST - The Celtics are reeling and there's little hope in sight for the time being.  They're coming off a hard loss in Milwaukee last night, and now they have to face a Memphis team that is battling hard for a playoff berth in the West.  The Grizzlies are four games behind Portland for the 8th spot in the West, and they know every game is crucial at this point.  Playing a tired and aging Boston team on the 2nd night of a back-to-back might just be helpful to them.

Charlotte at Philadelphia, 7pm EST - Charlotte's win last night boosted them up into the 7th spot in the East, but they are aware that a loss tonight might drop them right back into 9th.  They have their eyes on the #5 spot and they just might get it.  The Sixers have dropped six of their last seven games and appear to be running out their season...five of those 6 losses were double-digit defeats.

L.A. Clippers at Miami, 730pm EST - The Clippers lost by 26 points, then fired their head coach last night.  Miami slipped into the 8th spot last night and have lost Rafer Alston for an undetermined period of time (for personal reasons).  This game might come down to "who wants to win it less".

Toronto at Sacramento, 10pm EST - The Raptors used to have a firm grip on a playoff spot.  6 losses in 7 games have loosened that grip.  They're falling apart and need a boost immediately.  Playing the Kings might be that boost.  Toronto is in the 6th slot in the East, but they're only 1.5 games ahead of 9th place Chicago.  By the time their west coast road trip is over, they might find themselves on the outside in this race.